Connected Devices Weekly Update/2016-10-13

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Program Passed Gate Status Notes
Project Sensor Web Cindy/Jean Gate 1 On Target
  • Follow up on action items from Gate 1 Pitch for next PIB status checkin late Oct.
    • Provide more details on project critical path;showing the user stories to deliver for the various project milestones.
    • Provide detail project cost analysis; fixed vs variable, scale market cost for min and max, data cost for AWS usage
  • Kicked off Branding review on project requirements to support program launch
    • Checkin in 2 wks with proposed branding framework
  • Kicked off User study #1 for user interviews in Taipei for late Oct.
    • Preparing user interaction walkthru and interviewee questions along with 3D prototype.
  • Kicked off discussion with Hardware consulting vendor to support creation of early sensor prototypes by end of Dec 2016.
    • Review this week on Hardware components list and Hardware development Schedule for Dec 2016

Project_Haiku (taking in Project Smart Display) Liz/Joe/Mahe Gate 0 On Target
  • As part of our pivot, we completed our final experiment about a wearable device for girls 12-15. We were also asked to provide a POV about wearables for Mozilla. Find our POV and the results of the study here.
  • We're mid-way (ish) through our pivot experiment to validate major assumptions. Results and findings will be shared week of Nov 3, when we present the same to the leadership team.
    • Haiku.jpg
Platform and Tools Sandip/Nicole N/A On Target

Breaking down near/medium term Platform goals

  • Q4-2016:
    • Create a white paper to outline initial Platform Architecture & integration patterns to document proposals and start reviews with cross-functional teams.
    • Continued evaluation of use cases (devices, services) to prioritize with our platform. Identifying key architectural blocks to start work with. Current list includes OTA framework, security policies, voice enablement. DevKit will be used to support developers with tools/utilities/APIs around these blocks.
  • 2017:
    • Create a Web of Things API implementation with a common format across at least 2 products and using at least 2 integration patterns (out of cloud, gateway and device), as a reference implementation to contribute to standardization work.
    • Create at least 2 significant components as a part of the platform that IoT developers can use to build their solutions. Some examples of components are voice interface enablers, OTA framework, Security policies etc.

Weekly Notes:

Voice Platform - Deep Speech Sandip/Nicole N/A On Target
  • Integrated two training sets into Deep Speech
    • TED Talk speech corpus (300 hours of speech)
    • LibriVox speech corpus (1000 hours of speech)
  • Implemented WER (word error rate) evaluation code for train, validation, and test data sets to track WER progress as the model evolves.
  • Started implementation of reporting GUI to track training progress
Abigail Preeti/Julie Gate 0 On Target

Prototype Development and Testing

  • Continued discussing hardware components for the prototype and especially the power requirements and how to solve for that
  • Met with industrial design consultant who will make some mock ups to consider next week
  • Made progress in code to wake up device with a tap
  • Completed revisions in Vaani server code
  • Continued work to engage a company to produce a video to describe the overall purpose and functionality of Abigail to get consumer feedback.
  • Working on value propositions
  • Leveraging detailed research study with busy families (about 20 in Vancouver and local Bay Area) conducted by Rina and Mihaela, where questions were around concepts that were a focus of Cue, Vaani, and Smart Kitchen past projects. They’re working on synthesizing this data.
  • Working on best ways to collect data from study participants - i.e. forming the right questions

Work Week Goals

  • Complete end-to-end integration for one reminder use-case, say “Remind me to pickup Sasha at 4pm today”
    • From wifi setup to receiving notification for a single user (text message notification unless team can solve the ios notification issue)
  • Finalize details of User Study Plan, including what we want to learn and how


  • Prototype development: month of October (includes Oct 17th Work Week in SF)
  • Assembly of devices: week of October 31
  • Testing in homes: November 7 - 18
  • Data synthesis from pilot and video/landing page studies: November 21 - 29
  • Gate 1 pitch: November 30
Project Magnet David/Maria Gate 0 On Target


  • Democratize story telling so people never miss the stories nearby that matter to them

Problem Statement

  • User: It’s too easy for curious and inquisitive people to miss the fascinating stories around them. Today nearby content is siloed, requiring a different app for each experience. A single open platform is more convenient for users and accessible to all content owners.
  • Storyteller: It’s too difficult and costly for storytellers to deploy content to physical locations, it requires excessive time, money and expertise


  • Mobile Client: Connects people with publishers via nearby experiences.
  • Service & Tools: Enables publishers to deploy content into physical spaces, manage beacons, deployment health, and analyze impact.
  • Hardware: Off the shelf Physical Web beacons, preconfigured to our service for friction less setup.

Magnet architecture.png

Pilot Pre-Gate1

  • Gate 0 passed with caveat to nail down the use cases / segments in one week (Gate 0 pitch and Video Recording)
  • MVP User Stories and Backlog created
  • The pilot will aims to test the assumption that our app can deliver timely, relevant content, resulting in delightful experiences.
    • Client with minimum feature set required to validate our assumptions
    • Service to feed client with additional location based content
    • Geographic target:London
    • Magnet team publishing popular content
    • Features released and tested incrementally
  • Project Timeline

Magnet pilot projectplan.png

Project HomeWeb Ben/Mahe Gate 0 On Target

Home Monitoring System

Project homeweb wordmark.png

Gate 0 approved, pending allocation of resources (otherwise known as "people").

Wiki page:

Next steps:

  • Four week landing page experiment/survey to test value proposition
    • Local storage vs. cloud storage
    • Fixed cost vs. recurring cost
    • Single web interface vs. multiple apps
    • Multiple brands vs. single brand
  • Four week architectural spike to test technical feasibility
    • Is the identified white label solution sufficient for the intended use cases?
    • Can we create an easy setup experience using off-the-shelf sensors and cameras?
GameON! Candice/Julie Pre Gate 0 On Target

Product Definition

  • Focus is on product differentiation and tech enhancements that will bring something totally new with this concept
  • Use case refinement has narrowed the scope of a first iteration prototype that will be proposed in Gate 0 pitch
  • Refining the Gate 0 pitch and will send it out for feedback in the coming week
  • Gate 1 pitch: November 30


  • Development of a game board simulator and also a physical board with an LED base

Game board prototype.png

  • Evaluating Hall sensors and magnets
    • Prototype spinner developed

Kevin's spinner.png

  • Identified specific requirements around basic game play
  • Working on a demo for the Gate 0 Pitch presentation
Lighthouse Preeti/Julie Gate 0 On Target


  • Work on image matching is progressing well. Might work well enough to not have to worry about separating out background during image acquisition
  • Testing alternatives for mic/speaker, including Wolfson card, Wilson card that uses I2S expansion bus on rpi, as well as USB option. Goal is to make a quick decision so that prototype can be assembled in time for the study.
  • Team is looking for an additional engineer to help on this project

User Study with Prototype

  • Testing hypotheses around technical feasibility, that study participants will trust it, not the testing of specific form factors.
  • Current thinking is that team members will accompany participants on shopping outings and possibly assist in taking photos of the items being purchased, as the focus of the study is on how well image matching works, not on how easy it is for the participants to take the photos.


  • Complete development of prototype: October
  • Assemble prototypes: Oct 31 - Nov 4
  • Prototype pilot: Nov 7 - 18
  • Data synthesis from pilot and video/landing page studies: November 21 - 29
  • Gate 1 pitch: November 30
PocketID Francisco Pre Gate 0 On Target
  • No update this week, as the team has been working on projects with higher priority.
Participation Update Michael/Brian -- On Target
  • No new update
Market Developments Update Irina
  • Amazon Alexa:
    • The Alexa API has been updated to support the "Alexa" wake-word for 3rd-party devices. Until now this has only been available for a few select device manufacturers who entered agreements directly with Amazon. This release makes voice activation available to the entire population of 3rd-party device manufacturers using the API.
    • Jam Audio is the latest speaker brand to join the Alexa ecosystem. The full set of features that is available on the Echo can also be used on the Jam Audio with extra capabilities for multiroom audio, if multiple Jam devices are present.
  • IoT platforms:
    • IBM is investing $200 million towards expanding and improving the company’s Watson Internet of Things (IoT) platform in Munich, Germany, which will serve as a new global headquarters. The investment will also cover IoT capabilities regarding IBM’s Blockchain security platform, and will provide cash to certain clients who want to use the Watson IoT platform in their applications, whether a car, ball bearings, equipment components, or machines. IBM has actually invested over $3 billion dollars into its Watson IoT platform across the globe. The company has more than 6,000 clients worldwide that are using this platform, which is 2,000 more than what IBM reported just eight months ago. The new Munich headquarters will employ 1,000 local researchers, engineers, developers, and business experts, and will serve as the home base for what IBM calls its “cognitive IoT Collaboratories” labs.
  • IoT security:
    • The Cloud Security Alliance’s Internet of Things Working Group has released a new guidance report intended to help device makers design and develop more inherently secure IoT products. "That’s one of the things we wanted to do with this report was provide ammunition to the manufacturers and vendors of these types of devices to say, ‘Hey, take a step back, focus on some fundamental security and engineering concepts, understand who may be trying to break into your devices and take, at the very least, the minimum steps necessary to secure those products so they’re not open to becoming the next node in a botnet," said Brian Russell, chair of the CSA’s IoT Working Group,
    • The European Commission is drafting new cybersecurity requirements to beef up security around so-called Internet of Things (IoT) devices such as Web-connected security cameras, routers and digital video recorders (DVRs). News of the expected proposal comes as security firms are warning that a great many IoT devices are equipped with little or no security protections.
Other Announcements / Questions -- --